Andy McCarthy was inspired to put up three posts at The Corner today. Two focused on the usual guilt by association maneuvers and one-sided ideological attacks on Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf and the, ahem, Lower Manhattan cultural center controversy.
We’ve covered this same territory many times by now, so I’ll instead focus on the third post, “Sharia Creeps.” The post’s first half is directed at another story we’ve discussed before, echoing the reaction of the PowerLine bloggers to an incident in Dearborn, Michigan, in which anti-Islamic Christian evangelists were prevented by police from distributing their materials outside a Muslim fair. Both McCarthy and the PowerLiners present the incident as representing the gradual takeover of Anytown, USA, the inexorable spread of Islamic (in)justice threatening to make every city, suburb, and roadside rest stop in the entire United State of America indistinguishable from deepest, darkest Waziristan.
Because there are actually some people who seem to believe something like that is taking place, I will now emphasize that I was just joking.
Like the PowerLine guys, McCarthy neglects to inform his readers that the particular group involved in the Dearborn incident – “Acts 17 Apologetics,” sponsors of the AnsweringMuslims.com site – consists of committed evangelical activists with a history: The video record that so appalled John Hinderaker last month and is still appalling Andy McCarthy this month is a contrived piece of political theater, a most recent chapter in Acts 17’s unapologetically Islamophobic campaigns, which include provocations against the majority Muslim community of Dearborn that go back at least as far as 2009.
The second half of McCarthy’s post turns the Islamo-alarum several notches up on the volume dial. McCarthy draws attention to an interesting appellate decision in New Jersey (discussed here) concerning possible conflicts between traditionalist Islamic views of marriage and contemporary U.S. law:
Now comes this story out of New Jersey: A Muslim woman was raped by her Muslim husband (who was about to divorce her). However, a state judge refused to find that there had been a sexual assault or any kind of criminal sexual misconduct because, under sharia principles, a wife may not refuse her husband’s requests for sex. As the man told the crying woman, “This is according to our religion. You are my wife, I c[an] do anything to you. The woman, she should submit and do anything I ask her to do.”
McCarthy does disclose that the judge’s decision was reversed on appeal, but he neglects to inform the Corner reader of a critical fact: The case in question was not a rape trial, but rather a dispute under New Jersey family law. A criminal sexual assault action was being prosecuted in a separate court. The sole question under consideration by the trial judge referred to above was whether the woman, as plaintiff, should be granted a “final restraining order” against the defendant.
In short, the overturned decision had a much different character than McCarthy implies. McCarthy clearly intends a sensationalistic effect – to suggest that one or another school of rigid and comprehensive sharia (not that McCarthy makes any distinctions of this type) is on the verge of taking over the criminal justice system in New Jersey, meaning that hordes of evil Muslim men will soon be raping their wives (and eventually “our” womenfolk, too, no doubt) with impunity – unless all good right-thinking people join McCarthy on his Crusade against the ongoing Grand Jihadist subversion of all that’s Good and (Judeo-Christian) Holy.
To complete the performance, McCarthy links to his own rambling and bilious attack on Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. McCarthy is especially concerned about Kagan’s work on “Sharia-compliant” finance – methods by which Muslim individuals and organizations can invest in the West without violating Islamic prohibitions against usury. That Kagan failed to protest Harvard’s endowment of a program to study (McCarthy says “lionize”) Islamic history and jurisprudence also seems to make her, in McCarthy’s view, an accomplice to beheadings and stonings. For McCarthy, she might as well have polished the blades and selected the rocks. In today’s post, he merely makes Kagan a silent accomplice to future rape, in a sentence that links to that article: “Expect to see lots more of this as long as sharia’s apologists inhabit high places.”
Unfortunately, I do expect to see “lots more of this” – perhaps until the day that someone at National Review manages a peep of dissent, traces even the outlines of an alternative point of view on this subject, and McCarthy’s reactions force the editors to choose between him and some shred of credibility.